Birthers sometimes suggest that Grandmother Dunham filed a report by mail with the Hawaii Department of Health to register the birth of President Obama. The statute in force at the time stated that in the case of an attended birth, for which the parents were unable to file a birth certificate, it was the responsibility of the local registrar to obtain the necessary information, and fill out the form. So no grandmother mail-in.
That still leaves the theoretical possibility that one of President Obama’s parents filled out a form and mailed it in. Since filing a birth certificate falsely is a crime according to the statute, I think it reasonable to assume that anyone filing a certificate would either have to have it notarized if mailed in, or witnessed by the local registrar if filed in person. So what about that “mail in form,” is it possible?
I thought I would nail down this sucker once and for all by asking the Hawaii Department of Health whether they had “mail-in forms” in 1961. The answer was that there is no one still working there who was around in 1961. They cannot confirm an answer. The 1949 provision on the “forms of certificates” doesn’t tell us anything. I think this is the end of the trail on the mail-in form.
I for one, think that there was only one form in 1961, a form we’ve seen for the Nordyke twins. I believe that if Obama was registered, it was using this form. Occam’s razor asks us why we would want to imagine 2 forms, but can I prove that there weren’t two forms? Can I prove there weren’t two hundred? Can I prove that there wasn’t a different form just for births on August 4, 1961 to someone whose father was “African” that said in small print “Happy Birthday to our future president”? No, I can’t, nor do I think I likely that I ever will. I’m not losing sleep over it.
There are just some things we don’t know and probably won’t find out.